Good News from Cat Island, How to Help

rescued cat japan earthquake tsunami

A cat (perching on overhang) rescued from one of the hardest hit areas.

Sendai Television Inc. ( reported a message on their bulletin board regarding contact from Tashirojima (Cat Island). On March 14 approximately 2pm local time, two tourists from Aoba-ku, Sendai were confirmed safe in one of the shelters on Cat Island. Though the post was later removed from the bulletin, we were able to retrieve it through Google caching (screenshot).

Most of people and cats are doing ok on the island, but they are very short of necessities such as food and water. A Self-Defense Force helicopter has landed on Tashirojima (cat island) and rescue effort is underway.

“Just to give everyone an update on Tashirojima, cat island. The people and cats are safe but short of food. A volunteer looked into transporting food by boat, but the is too much debris in the water. A helicopter is the only way. The army will probably get a helicopter ready soon so we are looking into the possibility of asking them to take cat food too,” stated by Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support, a coalition of three no-kill rescue groups: Japan Cat NetworkHeart Tokushima and Animal Friends Niigata.

Many other rescue groups have been on the road to send relief to the devastated areas, but traffic is the biggest hurdle for them to get to the places. The same trip that used to take only a couple hours, now takes 7 or longer hours to get to. Many shelters are also affected by limited gas supply for transportation and scheduled power outages.

Animal Welfare will be deploying a team to assess needs regarding animal rescue. “”As we saw most recently in Haiti, major disasters require long-term planning and a concerted effort between NGO and governmental ranks to ensure that the greatest number of animals and humans benefit from the intervention.” You can donate to help.

Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support have set up a fundraiser for people who want to chip in and help. You can check out Japan SPCA to send your support.

World Vets and and American Humane Society are on their way to provide relief to the affected areas.

Below image from Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue:

“This is the start of our trip to get closer to the areas affected. We packed the van with supplies from Animal Friends Niigata (where any animals we find will be brought back to, given proper medical care). What you see is pet food, kennels, leashes and capturing equipment.”

animal friends niigata load up the car ready to rescue

Japan Earthquake animal rescue & support getting ready for their trip to the hardest hit areas

cute puppy rescued reunited with owner japan earthquake tsunami

A local Japanese newspaper reported a rescued puppy reunited with his owner


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68 Responses to “Good News from Cat Island, How to Help”

  1. Jemma says:

    Thanks for the update – we are so glad to hear most people and cats on the island are safe!

    • Estelle says:

      so happy this lovely island went through this disaster, now I hope food will soon arrived

  2. Lashantina says:

    I hope and pray this will be able to bring some cat food there along with other supplies…cats are hardy…they can hang on a few days without eating…

  3. carmela says:

    thanks for the update, I pray they can safely bring food and what ever is needed, happy to hear most people and cats are ok!!

  4. AlejandraGT says:

    Good news among such bad news…I am still concerned about Tama, the Station Master cat…I've got no news from her facebook account. If any of you get news, please leave a message here. If you haven't heard about Tama, write it in any web site search and read her amazing story…

  5. Arleen says:

    I am so happy to hear that the people and the cats on the island are surviving! The picture of the man being reunited with his dog is beautiful. :-)

  6. ronak says:

    I'm from Iran,me and my sister are very worry about the people and cat's and all of the animals in japan,we watching your site every day and we hope that every thing will be better for people and cat's in japan.

  7. Marilyn says:

    Thank you for the update. continued prayers for all in Japan.

  8. N says:

    Poor things! But I'm glad to hear most of them are okay.

  9. Brigitte says:

    Thank you for letting us know about Cat Island. I feel so helpless, I wish I could do something. I pray every night for them and wish for good to come out of this tragedy.

  10. Jane says:

    Have been thinking about this ever since your last post. Many thanks for updating with good news. Thoughts go out to the people of Japan and their animals

  11. karen says:

    Thank you so much for keeping us up to date about Cat Island. I know that humans are suffering…but so are the little animals! The photo of the man being reunited with his dog touched my heart….makes me feel that there's always a silver lining, even when things seem out of control. Thanks again for the info!

  12. Manu says:

    I'm so glad they're safe! :-) Thanks for the update!

    Hope they'll get some food now :o))

  13. Marg says:

    Thanks so much for an update. I hope they can get some supplies to the people and kitties.

    That picture of that man getting his doggie back made me cry. What a wonderful picture with all the disaster around.

  14. Marilia says:

    Thanks for the news!!!

  15. ElizabethSP says:

    Thank you for letting us know!

  16. Caroline says:

    OMG.. I was so gald that they're alright. brought tears to my eyes.. Wish I could abondon all I have right now and go to Japan to help my fellow people and furry friends..

  17. Christine Aspinall says:

    How relieved I was to hear this very good news! Delighted that the people and the cats have survived and are O.K. Hope that soon they will be able to get food through for the people and the kitties. Was also very touched with the photo of the man being reunited with his puppy. The man looks about to cry, the puppy looks bewildered and the rescue worker also looks very concerned. Do so hope there will be many more happy reunions in the midst of this most terrible disaster.

  18. Gloria says:

    Thank you god that the people and cats are okay, I have prayed for all of them since I heard the news…

  19. Fink says:

    I will pray for all the people and animals…

  20. Sandra says:

    Thank you for updating! I hope the cats & other animals as well as their human friends will be okay.

  21. sachie+Goma says:

    Ohh this is such a good news, I hope rescue group can get to them soon… have you get in touch with your friend there? My family is fine although they are shaken up a bit…

  22. caroline says:

    thanks a lot for the update! i was so worried! i was able to donate a little. Im still worried about my homestay family in Kamakura though….

  23. jenn_phil says:

    thank you for updating us! let's all pray that they will all be safe and recover from this devastating natural disaster. #prayforjapan

  24. meowmeowmans says:

    Thank you so much for this update. We will continue to purr and pray for the people and animals of Tashirojima, and for all of Japan,

  25. Ellie says:

    That last photo almost made me cry. Wonderful news. I'm so donating.

  26. Thank you for all the news…our prayers are with all those affected.

  27. Ann says:

    Dear Japanese Cat Rescuers,

    You are our heroes for going into those dangerous and devastated areas to rescue trapped and stranded, frightened and freaked-out cats. We wish you safety and success in all your efforts.

    Elizabeth Ann Scarborough, Cisco and Pancho

  28. ran says:

    Thanks god

  29. Mel says:

    Reunion photo was so awesome.Hope they get food and water over there soon.glad for some good news

  30. Kimberly says:

    Thank you all so much for sharing these information, i've been worrying about Tashirojima. i'm happy to hear the good news, and glad to find a way to help out.

  31. Sporky says:

    Thank you so much for the info! I've been so worried!

  32. yotaka says:

    I've been soooooo worried about these cats! Very glad that it seems I will be able to visit the island one day. I send my prayers and donations to Japan.

  33. Anne Petzer says:

    I am so pleased and impressed by your effort to save the cats-God bless you for doing that. My prayers are with you.

  34. Kathryn M. says:

    Thank you for your efforts to keep us updated on Cat Island.

  35. Fisher says:

    Thank you so much for keeping us all informed. It seems we have pretty small problems compared to the animals in Japan. Thank you for doing such a great service! Your friend, Fisher

  36. Old Kitty says:

    Oh wow!! I'm so happy to know that there is an SPCA in Japan!! That's great!! Thanks for this news update – I just love that picture of the man reunited with his dog – I think that sums up the hope that can be achieved amidst such devastation.

    Take care


  37. Wyllow says:

    Tears when I read this post! I am so happy everyone there is safe. Thank you for keeping us updated! Be well in Japan, humans and animals, all!

  38. Elma says:

    Im very happy to read about this news update . I prayed that they will get help food what they need. thanks a lot .

  39. Teri says:

    So happy most everythings safe. I'd love to be there to help with the care of the cats and to releave the people.

  40. rose says:

    thank you so much for update..

    our company is taking payroll donations for japan & then will match what ever you put in..

    I couldnt amagine what these people went through..god bless the people & animals..:)

  41. Jess says:

    As far as I know, Tama (the station master cat) is in Wakayama prefecture, which is quite far from the epicenter. I'm sure she and her family are safe- perhaps they haven't been able to update because they are trying to conserve electricity to help in the relief effort.

  42. Kristine says:

    I'm so happy to hear that most of them are safe and that Cat Island wasn't submerged by the tsunami.

    God bless people who love & help animals & I hope all the lost will be found.

  43. June says:

    Thank God the cats and people made it. I cried when I read the story. Donated. Will check in to see if all is well there in light of the radiation . I was watching tv and saw 2 dogs. one would not leave the other because 1 was hurt. they were rescued.

  44. Ingrid says:

    Thank you so much for the update, I've been thinking a lot about Japanese people and their furry friends those last few days. I was wondering whether the cat's island was safe and sound…

  45. Ann says:

    I am concerned about the radiation and its effect on the cats of Tashirojima especially. People can take a little more radiation than a small animal. What if anything can be done to protect the animals?

  46. Iffat Ahmad says:

    Thank you so much for the update. This is the 1st news I have heard of the cats & other animals in Japan & they of course have been heavily on my mind. Up until now, I was unaware of Cat Island! I plan on making a donation today so thank you for providing the link. My love goes out to all the kitties.

  47. Rach says:

    I am so pleased to hear this news! I pray for all of the people and animals affected.

    I have tried to make a donation by clicking on the fundraiser link, however I am unable to view this in English. If anyone is able to assist me with this, please post a comment and I will keep a look out for it! Thank you xx

  48. Serena says:

    Guys! praying hardly helps! DONATE!! every little counts! i just donated a 100 dollars! THEY NEED MONEY! On another note i am very concerned for the pets still 'out and about' near the area of the nuclear plant! i really hope in the next day or so we get an 'official' image/word that the island is okay! in this chaos its easy to ignore the animals. My heart goes out to all victims human and animal alike.

    BTW: the island seems very high, mountain like (via Google earth), unlike other parts were the tsunami hit hardest, does anyone have conformation on its actual sea level? this could play a big role in confirming what others have said about the island being OK other than short supplies…

  49. Geri says:

    I'm so relieved to know that people in Japan are helping the animals.

  50. pumbie says:

    I've just made a donation. I encourage people to give something. I hope all of you to be well and in good health. I would like to visit that

    beautiful island in a near future. Good luck from Spain.

  51. Wayne Washburn says:

    I forwarded this to both the cat rescue groups I work with. Hopefully it will generate more donations to help the Japanese kitties.

  52. Brigitte says:

    Such a devastating situation for humans and animals alike….I sincerely hope the supplies will get to Cat Island very quickly. DONATE!

    I am also so concerned about level of radiation around the nuclear plant…. it will affect everything: wildlife, flora and humans…what a tragedy!

  53. Joanne says:

    Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support group hasn’t posted any updates on the Tashiro Island cats.

    Last I heard they were going to inquire if the Japanese Army would agree to deliver cat food to the island along with all the other supplies.

    It appears the Tashiro cats are not a priority for this animal rescue group.

    Has anyone called Best Friends or any other rescue group to see if they can pull some strings and arrange for cat food to be delivered to the island through their Japanese or Asian counterparts?

    • Love Meow says:

      I think the hardest part is to get help from the government. I will let you guys know as soon as I get updates on cat island.

      • Joanne says:

        Thank you for the update.

        On 3/18 the Japanese Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support group posted a message that they are trying to find someone to contact on Tashiro Island. JEARS wants to find out if any cat food or cat supplies ever reached the island. You can contact JEARS via their FB page, the moderator's name is David Wybenga.

      • Love Meow says:

        Thank you Joanne, I have been following their page since day one. They are absolutely amazing! I will definitely contact David if I find any info.

  54. arabianmau says:

    Thank god for the animal rescues, often animals get forgotten in major disasters. GOOD LUCK! and with love, from UAE

  55. christellar says:

    I am so glad you posted this; I trust your rescue sources! Thank you!

  56. Kaori says:

    I'm so reliefed to see this news that Tashirojima,Cat Island is safe.

    I'm in Sendai Japan,I'm so worried about the Island,almost hopeless.

    It's really a miracle that they are safe in this massive attack of tsunami around Tashirojima. I felt hope with this news. Thank you for the news.

  57. Rusty's Mom says:

    I donated to the Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support chip-in,… right after the quake. I hope that everyone who can will give something. I always feel that it's the pets and animals who get so overlooked during these disasters. I'm glad the kitties on Cat Island have survived. But, they'll need so much help to get them through this.

  58. Joanne says:

    VERY IMPORTANT: The Japanese Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support group is trying to find someone to contact on Tashiro Island – Cat Island to find out if the island ever received any cat food /cat supplies. Please advise if you know someone who they can contact or if anyone reading this message knows a good contact on Cat Island please contact JEARS via their Facebook page. The moderator's name is David Wybenga. The Japanese Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support group FB page is

  59. Joanne says:

    The Japanese military is using hovercrafts to transport supplies to offshore islands i.e. Cat Island A photographer named Max Hodges has posted photos on his website showing the damage at Ishinomaki (location of ferry to Cat Island) and whe…re the military hovercrafts were photographed. Not sure if this information will help JEARS deliver supplies to Cat Island. Here's the link to Max Hodges website The hovercraft is shown in pictures 23-26, there are 31 pictures in all. I have no idea if the hovercrafts stopped at Cat Island. I can only surmise that this is how the Japanese military is delivering goods to islands off the mainland.

  60. Joanne says:


    IFAW pulled back their rescue operations due to the radiation risk, a team from PETA – Asia is on the ground with JEARS, Best Friends and WSPA have not decided whether or not to send teams to the disaster site. …

    PETA has a vast network of contacts too so they may be able to arrange a PRIVATE transport of cat food to the island instead of relying on the military to deliver the food.

    I think we should all call PETA corporate and find out if this can be arranged.

    PETA's contact on the ground is Ashley Fruno, a senior campaigner with PETA Asia—who, along with Isabella Gallaon-Aoki of Animal Friends Niigata (JEARS), was the first responder from any international animal rights group to reach the disaster area in Japan after taking the first flight to Tokyo after the airport reopened Saturday night

  61. Joanne says:

    Posted by Selena Kyle – calls into question all the news reports stating the cats are fine and survived the tsunami. Message contains a link to a blog with postings from the Islanders.

    Perhaps PETA -Asia or JEARS can arrange a private transport of supplies & food for the cats on the island. Right now things are not looking too good for the islanders or the cats.

    Not one rescue organization either human or animal has ever stated they have made it to the peninsula or Tashiro Island to actually confirm any of the stories circulating on the net. Well enough of this already. There is another blog out there that is actually stating by Japanese islanders on the peninsula have had contact with a few family and relatives on the island and have stated they have been told the residents are fairly safe (sadly one died due to oxygen necessity being cut off when power went off), and still, no one knows exactly how the cats are fairing or how many cats survived. By all accounts thus far, the bloggers there indicate the residents might have had a helicopter bring them food and supplies enough for 2 or maybe 3 months and their water wells are intact so they have water. They are camping on higher ground and can cook, I assume, buy fire or camp stoves or kerosene – they said 2 boats were capsized in the tsunami and seaside cottages have been destroyed but appears residents made it to safety. Either cell phone or land phone use is spotty, but apparently enough for friends and relatives to have made a few contacts in last couple of days. The owners of an inn there appear to have lost the inn structure but the owners are safe. A few tourists are also there. The residents are afraid people will not help them rebuild in the future, this is their lifeline and livelihood so once confirmations start rolling in, get the word out these islanders need help and volunteers to help them rebuild and keep their cherished Cat Island (and hopefully engineers will help rebuild to withstand another tsunami!!!). Here's the blog, in translated form. I've only had limited conversation on this blog because I am not good with Japanese language but nonetheless, I posted on it and received very helpful replies, they are wonderful people.

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